Thursday, October 22, 2009

Kristy2009: Runner

Just throwing this out there, but today totally feels like a Friday.

Last Friday I was gearing up for this:


Well...the half marathon that is. But hey, if Kristy2009 could go back in time and tell Kristy2000 that she was going to run slightly more than 13 miles (consecutively, within a short period of time) she would have been laughed at. Because Kristy1996 through Kristy2002 hated even running the mile. And I think 80's and early 90s Kristy probably wouldn't have loved the idea either, it's just no one had ever asked her. But back to Kristy2009...

A little before 7AM Saturday morning I lined up with 10,000 other lovely people, said a prayer, and then ran 13.1 miles. It was awesome. I'm not really sure why. Maybe it was because of the endorphins or something, but it was. I can't wait to do it all over again.

I have to say, running has become sort of an anomaly in my life. I really hate to suck at things, and in certain facets my competitiveness has become unhealthy. But despite the fact that I'm not that great at running I REALLY enjoy it, and when I can't run, I miss it. So over the past couple of years I've nurtured this love pretty carefully by protecting it from almost any form of competition, or potential competition. To put it simply, I run solo. I don't run with friends, I try not to ask others how well or fast they run, I abstain from discussing my own training too much, and in the dead of winter you'll find me on the treadmill in the corner. So to spend my otherwise normal Saturday morning run with a few thousand other people has brought about a change. In fact, after stumbling across this snippet on yesterday, I might even say it:

Runner: is a person who RUNS. Period...If you're interested enough in the sport to come here, the chances are excellent that yes, you're a runner no matter how slow or fast you are or whether you ever enter a race or not.

I am a runner.


I also have tendonitis. I think it happened the Tuesday before the race, when I noticed the arch of my right foot ached post-run. So taking the advice of a Physical Therapist (and Boston Marathon finisher) I work with I very reluctantly laid off the running until Saturday morning. Around mile 2 (that's 15% into the race for those of you who are counting) I could tell something was up. Around mile 9 ignoring it wasn't working anymore and I had to take a second to evaluate my options. It went something like this:

Stop running, ice and recover? Umm, no. Keep running? Sounds like a plan.

I'm sorry if my word choice isn't the best, but I'll be damned if I was going to train for 3 months, come dangerously close to quitting the whole ordeal, then miraculously break through my own personal wall, drive 125 miles, run 9 and then STOP!

Besides, once you get into the running zone, it actually takes more concentration to stop your legs from the continual rhythm they've gotten used to than to just keep going. So that's what I did...and later learned all the benefits of R.I.C.E. That stands for Rest, Ice, Compress, Elevate. It became an acronym for a reason. Use it.

Now I'm just pumped to run the race again next year because I missed out on the 3 mile "woosh" at the end. The 3 mile "woosh", as I call it, is the final 3 downhill miles of the run which is a special treat after the previous 10 mostly uphill miles. So in my head I was always thinking that if I made it through the first 10, the last 3 would be like a woosh to the finish. Saddly, I wasn't able to put that much pressure on my foot the last 3, but you better bring it KC. I'll see you October 16, 2010.

I'm also thinking about the Nashville Country Music Half in April, but I'm not to keen about 100% winter training. I'll keep you posted. Something else I've been thinking a half in all 50 states. Sounds like a plan.

And that's the way it is :)

Thursday, October 8, 2009

A joyful reunion


Sorry, but out of many, many options that was the only way I could think to really start this post. The same way I greet a friend that I haven't seen in a long time. I mean, it hasn't really been that long, but when you've been without internet for 4 days it makes you antsy. I've gone without internet for weeks at a time, but it was voluntary. When it's rudely taken away from you by Mediacom (booo, hisss!!) and you're regularly using the world wide web to pay your bills, get your weather, track your runs, read the news or connect with friends it becomes an unwelcome lifestyle change. With that said, my first web-stop post-internet-drought was the CenturyTel website. After four years of Mediacom-driven headaches I'm making the switch. Stop number two: blog.

I have wanted to talk about so many things here, and now that I can finally put fingers to keys my brain has become a virtual traffic jam of possible postings. There's no way I can pick one and be satisfied, so instead I'm going to list off some of the things that have been on my mind lately. I wish I could have a vote for which topic you, my readers, would like me to expand upon, but I just don't think there are enough of you. Is it still democratic when less than 10 people vote? So instead I'll get the initial rush out of my system and then focus my brainwaves on the next post. Until then, I give you my mental meanderings...

1. My "hippie" friend Amber is amazing. Whether I get to see her regularly or not she reminds me of what's important in life and in doing so has made me a better person in the time I've known her. This weekend I found out she put in her notice at work and is going to build a cob house and live off the land in Oregon.

2. I love my job. Although it has its ups and downs just like any other human interaction you can have in life I am so completely satisfied by it that doesn't seem...real. It's one of the many places I've been absolutely blessed in life.

3. I've been back from Europe for 4 months and I still haven't posted all of my pictures or shared all of my stories from the experience. And I've been thinking that this blog might be a good outlet for that.

4. I've gone from barely being able to complete the mile run in high school to being able to run 10 miles (soon to be 13) and feeling good at the end of it. It's one of the few things in my life that I'm genuinely bad at, but have continued to do and I don't know why.